MadaLuxe Group, a distributor of luxury fashion and timepieces, has formed a unit focused on acquiring the worldwide exclusive licensing rights for all fashion categories from global luxury brands.
The licensing arm will be led by Steven Barbery, who has been promoted from senior vice president of timepieces to president of licensing and timepieces, a new position at MadaLuxe. The company plans to produce and distribute the licensed products, beginning with handbags and small leather goods, and will outsource the manufacturing.
“Steven Barbery has continually proven his skill and vision by building our timepieces business to its current position as the largest distributor of luxury fashion Swiss-made watches in North America,” said Adam Freede, chief executive officer of MadaLuxe. “He has been promoted to continue leading that growth and to oversee all operations of our MadaLuxe licensing arm in addition to MadaLuxeTime.com, our full-price e-commerce channel for timepieces, which will grow into a multicategory full-line business.”
MadaLuxe is a family-run, New York and Los Angeles-based company that distributes luxury goods to off-pricers, luxury timepieces to regular-priced retailers and operates its own high-end off-price stores and web sites. The launch of the licensing arm is MadaLuxe’s most recent expansion move. In September, the company launched SLS Journey, an investment arm led by the group’s cofounder, Sandy Sholl. The investment division focuses on emerging companies at the intersection of wellness, beauty, fashion and technology.
Barbery joined MadaLuxe in 2017 to establish a watch division when the company acquired the exclusive distribution rights for Versace, Salvatore Ferragamo and Versus Versace watches. He created a distribution strategy that paralleled the parent brands’ strategies and expanded distribution into Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom and various fine and luxury watch stores. In 2019, MadaLuxe acquired the North America distribution rights for Fendi timepieces.
Barbery most recently served as vice president of luxury brands at Fossil Inc. Before that, he served as Fossil’s vice president of retail sales for North America.